Barker Martin

Condo-HOA Blog - Litigation

The Blame Game

Most of us can be quick to point fingers. It might be a fender-bender, an overcooked hamburger, or losing the Superbowl on the last play of the game - I know my first instinct is to figure out who is to blame for my suffering. In life, this instinct may be correct most of the time. If someone hits your car, you call the cops then expect the other driver's insurance to pay to fix it. If your hamburger is burned, you send it back and blame the chef. read more

Housing Opportunity Through Modernization Act of 2016

Following the real estate collapse in 2008 and subsequent recession, the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development ("HUD") and the Federal Housing Authority ("FHA") imposed detailed and restrictive requirements in order for the FHA to provide mortgage insurance on condominium loans. As a result, many condominiums were no longer in compliance with FHA regulations, and potential buyers could not qualify for the much more attractive FHA and other governmentally backed financing. The downturn in the real estate market and buyers' increased difficulty in obtaining condominium financing contributed to large financial institutions shifting their focus from financing development of condominiums to financing apartment projects. read more

The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly of the Insurance Discovery Rule

I was flipping through the channels this weekend and stumbled on the Clint Eastwood classic spaghetti western, The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly. Life imitates art and it occurred to me that most situations feature an element of good, bad, and downright ugly. I have a number of "First Party Insurance" claims sitting on my desk (e.g. an Association pursuing its own carrier for discovered property damage). Many of these involve the "discovery rule." Having dealt with this rule on a number of occasions, I've discovered the good, the bad, and the ugly of this rule. read more

Why So Few Condos in Seattle (Part 2)

In last week's post, we discussed the data and hard numbers supporting the influx of apartment buildings over condominium projects in the Puget Sound region. We concluded simple economics-maximizing profit-was the reason the large number of cranes in Seattle and Bellevue are constructing apartment buildings and not condominiums. But that's not what the building industry wants you to think. read more

Why So Few Condos in Seattle (Part 1)

The record-setting number of cranes visible in the Seattle and Bellevue skylines reflect a construction boom that began in earnest in 2015. Companies such as Amazon, Google, Facebook and other IT darlings are hiring like crazy. Like San Francisco, Seattle is a hot area to live, bringing thousands of new residents each month. With all of this growth, construction, and demand for housing, you may wonder why more condominiums are not being built in King County. read more

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